Westminster Social Policy Forum

The future for the Midlands Engine - investment, infrastructure and economic growth

Morning, Thursday, 29th November 2018

Central Birmingham


This seminar will assess the future for the Midlands Engine, bringing together policymakers with key stakeholders from across the region.

Delegates will discuss the progress of the second devolution deal between the Government and the West Midlands Combined Authority and the future for the governance in the region.

The agenda also looks at priorities for investment in the context of the £250m Midlands Engine Investment Fund, and support committed by the Government for a Midlands housing delivery taskforce, a construction skills training scheme and an allocation from the Transforming Cities fund to be spent on local intra-city transport priorities.

Further sessions will discuss the opportunities for attracting wider investment and fostering trade, as well as encouraging innovation and university collaboration, supporting the region’s manufacturing sector, and developing the skilled workforce needed to underpin the Engine’s success.

Keynote Speakers

Maria Machancoses

Director, Midlands Connect

Tim Pile

Chair, Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership; Non-Executive Director, Marshalls and Member of the Board, Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce

Paul Harris

Director of Economic Development, Rolls-Royce

Grant Peggie

Director, European Funding, British Business Bank


Maggie Throup MP

Member of Parliament for Erewash and Vice Chair, All-Party Parliamentary Group on the East Midlands

Richard Burden MP

Member of Parliament for Birmingham Northfield


Alison Munro

Chair, National College for High Speed Rail

Dr James Wilkie

Director of Enterprise and Innovation, University of Birmingham

Brendan Lynch

Independent 5G Adviser to the Midlands Engine

Dr Clive Hickman

Chief Executive, Manufacturing Technology Centre